14th December 2018: fifth hearing in the Court

5 witnesses took the stand, 5 Italian journalists who were in Donbass on the 24th May 2014. As a preliminary question, each of them were asked to go through their own professional experience: as a result, it was obvious that the freelance reporters questioned are professionals who used to work in war zones and are not unexpert youngsters at all.

  • Francesca Volpi (photojournalist): after having a few ties in Kiev during the Maidan uprising, Volpi spent a few weeks among Crimea and Donbass she was also in Donetsk on the 24th May 2014. She met the accused on the 2nd of May 2014 and their conversation is reported in a unauthorized video (online open source), that was showed in the Court. Back then she also discovered that during a phone call with the journalist Marcello Fauci the accused stated that he had the order to shoot anything moving.
  • Andrea Carrubba (photojournalist): stayed at the same hostel where Andy, Andrej and William Roguelon slept. They had the chance to meet there and exchange information about places around Sloviansk. Carrubba reported to have identified Andy’s and Andrej’s bodies at the morgue and to have recovered Andy’s PC and other few personal belongings from the hostel room.
  • Marcello Fauci (photographer): he had met the accused in Kiev during the Revolution in Maidan. They communicated extensively till May 2014, when Fauci was in Donbass. The day that Andy was killed, Fauci spoke to Vitaly Markiv over the phone, getting insights on the situation: the accused recommended leaving because the area was dangerous for journalists and they, Ukrainian National Guard, were ordered to shoot at anything moving.
  • Ilaria Morani (journalist): she was working with Fauci in Donbass. On the 24th May 2014, she assisted the previously mentioned phone call, in Italian and via loudspeakers, and got it published on the Corriere della Sera. This article can be accessed following this link. Morani confirmed that the accused implied had a leading role in the stationing above the Karachun hill from which the Ukrainian heavy artillery was firing.
  • Michela Iaccarino (photographer): together with Carrubba she was involved in the identification of the corpses and the custody of Andy’s and Andrej’s belongings. Her Russian knowledge allowed her to get immediate information during the search for the bodies.

The defense notified the witnesses’ reliability in certain details detecting light discrepancies from the depositions granted in November 2016: words chosen, use of synonymous and other context details.


30th November 2018: fourth hearing in Court

Opening, the defense attorneys of the Ukrainian Government objects the relevance of the bond between the defendant, Markiv, and Ukraine claiming that the Government is not responsible for the actions of their own employees if the emanation of the specific order executed is not proven. The Judge rejects their motion for Court dismissing the summons of Ukraine as civil responsible for the Rocchelli’s murder as included in the Rocchelli’s family summons submitted both in July and September, and already accepted then by the Court.
The hearing session was then entirely dedicated to deposition of the eye witness William Roguelon, survived to the attack besides being seriously injured. William was very clear headed and precise when telling what happened in the afternoon of 24th May 2014, answering precisely to the questions of Pavia’s public prosecutor and the lawyers. During the almost 2 hour report, video and photographic material was shown in support of his declaration. Among other things, William recognized the taxi covered in bullet holes framed in a video, and he underlined how the taxi initially had its bright sign and therefore was impossible to confuse it with a military car.
Moreover, he explained how a civil suit parallel to the Italian penal trial, the French Government recognized William as the first journalist victim of war crime and ratified his right to be refunded. And this case will become a precedent in the French jurisprudence.
It was published the agenda for the following hearing: 14th December 2018; 18th and 25th January 2019; 8th e 22nd February; 15th, 22nd and 29th March; 12th April.



24th May 2014: Andrea Rocchelli and Andrej Mironov are killed in Sloviansk. William Roguelon, seriously injured, survived after the assault.

Summer 2015: Since no feedback came from the Ukrainian authorities for more than one year after requests for information, Italian diplomatic representatives in Kiev and Pavia’s public prosecutor’s office, lead an international letters rogatory towards the Kiev Attorney.

May 2016: answering to the international letters rogatory, the Ukrainian authorities submitted to the Italian Ministry of Justice Ministero a substantial dossier in Ukrainian. In summary, it says it is impossible to know who killed Rocchelli and Mironov and injured Roguelon.

July 2017: Vitaly Markiv is arrested on charges of having been, together with others, part of the assault that was deadly for Rocchelli and Mironov.

17th May 2018: during the preliminary consultation at the Court of Pavia, the Judge rejects the nonsuit motion arisen by Markiv’s defense and decides the start of the trial.

December 2017 – January 2018: the Milan trial Court, appointed following the motion of the investigated Markiv’s Defense, for the re-examination of the legal action for the pre-trial detention order decided by the Pavia’s Public Prosecutor, on one hand rejected the Defence’s petition sentenced to cover the processual expenses, on the other hand confirmed again the warrant of the Pavia’s Public Prosecutor. In its report, the re-examination court concluded that «subsist momentous clues of guilt against the appealer [Markiv]» and that «it is not conceivable any attenuation of the pre-trial detention regime».

6th July 2018: first hearing of the trial at the Pavia’s Assize Court against Vitaly Markiv, indicted of Andrea Rocchelli’s murder, 24th May 2014. The Cesura photographers collective, the Italian Newspaper National Federation and the Journalist Lombardy Association joins the penal action as civil party.

14th September 2018: second hearing in Court. second hearing in court on A.R. family’s motion to the court to call into the proceeding the Ukrainian Government. The notification of the request to join the proceeding was dismissed for formal exemptions. The proceeding is adjourned for the notification to be submitted to the subject authorities according the procedure requested by those authorities.

23rd November 2018: third hearing in Court. Following to its summons, the Ukrainian Government, designated two defence attorneys. Their petition to refer again was dismissed by the judge. Pavia’s Public Prosecutor reported: a) repeated anonymous messages and phone calls in Ukrainian language just before the hearing; b) the “reversed” rogatory by Ukrainian authorities to the Italian Ministry of Justice, asking for the entire file of investigations so far to be sent to Ukraine and for Andy’s parents to be heard by a Public Prosecutor. With the aim of reducing costs and time, Public Prosecutor’s request to include in the case file of the proceeding some declarations given by witnesses for the defense has been granted, with no need of hearing them in the Court hall. On the defense motion instead, two Ukrainian senators and the driver of the car Andy and Andrei were traveling in will be heard. Two depositions followed: the first one, by the Pavia Carabinieri’s lieutenant Maurizio Pappalardo who explained the first investigation carried out, the second one by Luca Majocchi, EdilCeramica CEO, representative for the Zeus Ceramica factory in front of which Andy and Andrej were killed. Majocchi specified the positioning respectively the pro-Russian separatist and the Ukrainian nationalist armed groups in Spring 2014 within and outside the factory.